game_of_thrones_logoWe have a special guest this week: John Keating, a former Boston comedian who now lives in Los Angeles, working as an actor, who has a couple of geek-related projects in the works. He plays a primary character in the independent movie The Concessionaires Must Die!, a film about a bunch of genre geeks who work at a movie theater that’s about to close down, and which features a cameo by Stan Lee (playing someone other than Stan Lee for a change!). John’s also voice acting in a cartoon called Gen Zed, about a group of videogamers living together in a house, starring the first transgender voice actress in a lead role. So we spend some time talking about indie film production, the unique way that the directors and producers of The Concessionaires Must Die! got some early buzz and interest in the flick, and some of the basic ins and outs of voice acting in an animated show!

But John isn’t just an actor, he’s a longtime fellow geek with a huge interest in Game of Thrones. So we spend a lot of time talking about the fifth season of the HBO show, including our favorite and least favorite moments and storylines (hi, Sand Snakes!), some of the greater themes put forth in the season (like the effects of blind faith, and the perils of governing when you misunderstand your subjects), and whether the levels of violence and terror in some parts of the season were justified by the story and characters. And you know which parts we’re talking about.

We also discuss:

  • Mad Max Fury Road: Furiosa #1, written by George Miller, Nico Lathouris and Mark Sexton, with art by Sexton, Tristan Jones and Szymon Kudranski, and:
  • Thors #1, written by Jason Aaron with art by Chris Sprouse!

And now, the disclaimers:

  • We record this show live to tape, with minimal editing (although a couple of parts were cut to eliminate old inside jokes you wouldn’t understand, and to protect our secret identity). While this might mean a looser comics podcast than you are used to, it also means that anything can happen. Like learning the perils of Al Goldstein’s film festival.
  • This show contains spoilers. If you haven’t seen Game of Thrones fifth season, be forewarned.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. Unless you want your employer to hear the name of Al Goldstein’s film festival, get yourself some headphones.

And to get a sense of John’s current projects, here are the trailers for The Concessionaires Must Die!, and Gen Zed!

Thanks for listening, suckers!

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secret_service_1_mark_hamillSince we in Boston are staring down the barrel of another blizzard, we decided to get out of the Home Office while we could to catch a movie: Kingsman: The Secret Service, the new movie based on Mark Millar’s and Dave Gibbons’s 2012 comic The Secret Service.

While Rob in particular didn’t like The Secret Service as it was being released in comic form, we took the movie as an opportunity to reread the original series as a complete work, and we talk about some plot and thematic differences between the comic and movie, as well as what worked about the movie… and what didn’t work. (Important safety tip: if Samuel L. Jackson tells you, with a lisp, that in order to save the world he needs to put an explosive chip in your neck? Call your lawyer and tell him to ask Sam for his business plan first.)

We also discuss:

  • Star Wars: Darth Vader #1, written by Kieron Gillen with art by Salvatore Larroca, and:
  • Southern Bastards #7, written by Jason Aaron with art by Jason Latour!

And now the usual disclaimers:

  • We record this show live to tape. While that might mean a looser comics podcast than you might be used to, it also means that anything can happen. Like the discovery that many English foods sound like euphemisms for perverse locker room hazing (hi, Toad In The Hole!).
  • The show contains spoilers. While we try to shout out warnings ahead of time, if you intend to see Kingsman: The Secret Service, you should consider yourself warned.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is therefore not safe for work. Do you want to explain to your boss why chugging a Toad In The Hole isn’t a matter for the police? Get some headphones.
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holy_fck_1_coverPicture, if you will, a comic book about a world where old gods hide in the shadows. They have amassed monetary wealth and earthly power, and they plan to use it to force humanity to worship them again… by fomenting Armageddon on Earth, and then saving the last surviving dregs of humanity, who will worship the Old Ones while envying the dead. A world where the only one who can save us is a simple nun. Oh, yeah: and Jesus. Who rides a Harley. And carries a machine gun. And enjoys the use of stimulants and prostitutes. Oh, and I forgot: Satan’s there, too. And he and Jesus have a history. In the Sam and Diane, Ross and Rachel sense of the word.

Sound like a fun comic? Well, it actually exists, and this week, we’re excited to have as our special guests: Nick Marino and Daniel Arruda Massa, the co-creators of Action Lab’s Danger Zone imprint’s newest comic: Holy F*ck!

Nick and Daniel spent a little time with us to talk about the book, its origins, how they came to collaborate on the book, how it found a home at Action Lab, and what you can expect from this story of Jesus and Satan against the old gods (hint: there are no helicopters). We also extensively discuss the use of specialty hairpieces in the pursuit of comics work. It’s a damn fun interview.

In addition, Amanda and I talk about:

  • Dan DiDio’s ongoing series of Facebook posts recapping his 13-year history at DC Comics,
  • Star Wars #1, written by Jason Aaron with art by John Cassaday, and:
  • Constantine #21, written by Ray Fawkes with art by Jeremy Haun!

And the obligatory disclaimers:

  • We record this show live to tape (although we recorded our interview with Nick and Daniel separately, and then cut it into the remainder of the show). As such, it might be a little looser than other comics podcasts you are used to, but it also means that anything can happen. Like a detailed description of Zeus’s man-nipples.
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to shout warnings ahead of time, just assume we’re going to ruin every ending you ever cared about.
  • This show contains adult, profane languange, and is therefore not safe for work. We interview guys who created a book called Holy F*ck, guys; unless you want your boss to hear a discussion about Jesus’s and Satan’s special relationship, get some headphones.

A few other things we want to point out:

Nick and Daniel did a few short comics about what Jesus has been up to between Good Friday and Holy F*ck, if you want to get a taste of the book:

The first two issues are available at Comixology, and:

While we were talking, Nick put together and sent us a drawing that is relevant to our discussion, the comic and the title of this show:

clownmerkin

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Hi, my name is Lobo!  I enjoy vegan cuisine, fitness, and long walks on the beach.  I'm looking for someone who shares my affinity for sword collecting and leather clubs.  Could you be my special someone?

Hi, my name is Lobo! I enjoy vegan cuisine, fitness, and long walks on the beach. I’m looking for someone who shares my affinity for sword collecting and leather clubs. Could you be my special someone?

With the cancellation of Vortexx on the CW network, this is the first weekend that has had no Saturday morning cartoons on a major television network. And given that seeing superheroes on TV was a large part of what got Amanda and I into comics in the 1970s, we spend some time reminiscing about our favorite cartoons (as well as live action superheroics like The Adventures of Superman and Shazam!), and digging into how modern kids might find comic books. You know, other than billion-dollar Marvel Studios movies.

It is also a week where several comic characters have new faces behind classic costumes. So we talk about them all:

  • Lobo #1, written by Cullen Bunn with pencils by Reilly Brown,
  • Captain America #25, written by Rick Remender with art by Carlos Pacheco and Stuart Immonen, and
  • Thor #1, written by Jason Aaron with art by Russell Dautermann!

And now the legalese:

  • We record this episode live to tape. While this might mean a looser show than other comics podcasts, it also means that anything can happen. Like learning about a child named Vlad who apparently lives under the bed.
  • We spoil a lot of stuff on this show. While we try to shout out warnings ahead of time, consider yourself warned.
  • We use adult, profane language, and therefore this show is not safe for work. If you don’t have any headphones, ask Lobo. Based on what happened to him in this week’s issue, he’s not using them.
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miracleman_annual_1_coverThere are two types of people in this world: superhero comic fans who love Miracleman by Alan Moore and Neil Gaiman, and superhero comic fans who haven’t read all of it yet. Rob is in column A, and Amanda is in column B. Which means that they had very different reactions upon hearing that Marvel has announced that they will be publishing a Miracleman annual, with stories by Grant Morrison and Peter Milligan. This announcement begs the question: should new creators be allowed to jump into a story like Miracleman, which is a combined yet singular vision between two epic creators? And being two different types of people, Amanda and Rob have differing views on the announcement.

But there is more to comics than a couple of new short stories tacked onto a 30-year-old narrative. So Amanda and Rob also discuss:

  • The Death of Wolverine #1, written by Charles Soule with pencils by Steve McNiven,
  • Original Sin #8, written by Jason Aaron with art by Mike Deodato and
  • Big Trouble In Little China #4, written by Eric Powell and drawn by Brian Churilla!

And now the legalese:

  • We record this show live to tape. While this might mean a slightly looser show than your normal comics podcast, it also means that anything can happen.
  • This show contains spoilers. While we try to throw out a verbal warning before we cut loose, consider this fair warning.
  • Amanda and Rob use adult, explicit language, and therefore this show is not safe for work. The janitors portrayed in Miracleman had Walkman headphones for work, and that was 1984. What’s your excuse?
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sdcc_2010_pimp_fettSince we are less than 36 hours away from leaving for San Diego Comic-Con 2014, and therefore are fully engaged in preparing for the trip, we are a little fried today. So this is a shorter than usual episode (not the end of the world, considering we plan to podcast direct from the convention at least a couple of times), but a full one, where Amanda and I discuss:

  • The changes of Thor to a woman and Captain America to Sam Wilson that were announced on TV this week (if only there were a major convention to make these kinds of announcements!),
  • Since Amanda and I have attended nine straight San Diego Comic-Cons, we share a few tips on how to survive the whole experience (and avoid an extinction level digestive event), and:
  • Harley Quinn Invades Comic-Con International / San Diego #1, by Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti and a bunch of guest artists!

And now the legally-required disclaimers:

  • This show is recorded live to tape. This means there might be a few more pregnant pauses than you are used to in a comics podcast, but it also means that anything can happen.
  • There are spoilers in this show. We try to warn you ahead of time, but if you don’t know the kind of treatment you’ll get at a place called “Dick’s Last Resort,” you might deserve what you get.
  • This show contains adult, explicit language, and is not safe for work. I bought earbuds at a gas station for $12 today. What’s your excuse?
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Enjoy the show, suckers! And don’t forget to tune in for episodes live(ish) from SDCC later this week!

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walking_dead_dead_insideThis 4th of July weekend, we got sucked into the AMC marathon of The Walking Dead, and were surprised how binge-watching the whole thing from the beginning changed our opinion of the show. So we talked about that extensively, along with:

  • The NBC Constantine pilot leaked to the Internet this week. Amanda and I saw it, and have some fairly strong opinions as to what worked (Matt Ryan as John Constantine) and what didn’t (writing, pacing, too much exposition, not enough mystery, no local flavor, and some other stuff),
  • Original Sin #5, written by Jason Aaron with art by Mike Deodato, and:
  • Rocket Raccoon #1, written and drawn by Skottie Young!

And now, the legalese:

  • We record the show live to tape. That means a few stuttered words more than you’re used to in a comics / genre culture podcast, but it also means that anything can happen.
  • The show contains spoilers. Some weeks it’s a few, some it’s a lot. This is one of the latter. Be forewarned.
  • Amanda and I use explicit, adult language, so this podcast is not safe for work. Unless your boss likes phrases like, “Preemptive dribble of patriotism,” wear headphones.
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twilight_ruined_comic_conIt is Sunday, which means another episode of the Crisis On Infinite Midlives Podcast! This one recorded after the depths of a sugar coma!

In this episode, we discuss:

  • The recent Slate article by Ruth Graham condemning young adult literature as being something adults should be ashamed to read… and which pretty much out-and-out condemns genre YA fiction as “transparently trashy stuff”
    • During the conversation, we reference a novel called Submergence, by J. M. Ledgard
    • Further during the conversation, I maintain that David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest is a genre sci-fi novel. This may anger those who like to haul their copies around college coffee houses in an effort to look smart and try to score coed tail, but I am not the only one who thinks so.
  • MTV’s announcement of the MTVu Fan Awards during the 2014 San Diego Comic-Con, MTV’s genre and comics cred (which they utterly ignore in the announcement of said event), and whether Linkin Park is the right band to play SDCC when Anthrax (who did a song about Judge Dredd) will be right around the corner
  • Original Sin #3, written by Jason Aaron with art by Mike Deodato, and
  • Big Trouble In Little China #1, written by The Goon‘s Eric Powell with art by Brian Churilla!

And, as usual, our disclaimers:

  • This show is recorded live to tape with no editing, and as such may contain more pregnant pauses, looping logic, repeated assertions, and references to “Diarrhea Island” than you are accustomed to in a comics / pop culture podcast
  • This show contains spoilers. We make an effort to announce them ahead of time, but as to whether we are successful, well, see the point about “no editing.” Be particularly careful when it comes to our discussion of Original Sin #3.
  • This show contains adult, profane language, and is not safe for work. While I might personally think Beats By Dre are an abominable waste of money, I will ignore their use in the listening of this show.
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x_men_days_of_future_past_posterIt’s Sunday, and even though it’s the long Memorial Day weekend here in the States, it’s still time for another episode of the Crisis On Infinite Midlives Show!

In this week’s episode we talk about:

  • X-Men: Days of Future Past! We discuss how much we enjoyed the movie, some of the cooler moments in the flick, but most importantly: we try and take apart where the film fits into the X-Men movie franchise continuity, and whether or not any of the other movies can even exist with this one stuck at the end!
  • The recently announced title Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice! We talk about why the title makes sense, how a desire to make The Dark Knight Returns might have led to decisions director Zack Snyder made in Man of Steel, and how this title could have come directly from the name of one of our earlier podcasts!
  • Forever Evil #7, by Geoff Johns and David Finch
  • MPH #1, by Mark Millar and Duncan Fegredo
  • Original Sin #2, by Jason Aaron and Mike Deodato, and:
  • Why if 3D movies are bad, falling asleep during an IMAX 3D showing of Godzilla is worse (spoiler alert: it involves waking up to Godzilla shrieking at you through 100 subwoofers.

And now the legalese:

  • This podcast uses adult, vulgar language, and is not safe for work. This week’s hook joke is about penis tinting, and things really go downhill from there. Wear headphones. You are warned.
  • This show was recorded live to tape, and may contain awkward pauses, the use of the word “f**k” as a comma, and truly vile humor that any reasonable show would edit out.
  • This show is chock-full of spoilers. We try to warn you ahead of time, but there’s no getting around it: we are ruiners.
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tmp_amazing_spider-man_2_one_sheet_poster-1438492544Yes, we know, it’s been a couple of weeks since our last podcast, but we have a good excuse: we were drunk we were busy catching up on the latest in pop culture and comics after a weekend pretending we were still young reintroducing ourselves to classic video games!

So we are tan, rested and ready to talk about the biggest comics and geek events of the past week! Including:

  • A discussion of a weekend spent playing video games at the American Classic Arcade Museum at the Funspot Arcade in Laconia, NH
  • A talk about the highs (Andrew Garfield as Spider-Man) and lows (Jamie Foxx as Electro) of The Amazing Spider-Man 2
  • A dissection of the upcoming death of Wolverine, why it feels empty and corporate, why most recent comic book death stories feel the same, and a few comic book death stories that break that mold (and why)
  • A review of Jason Aaron’s and Jason Latour’s Southern Bastards, how it feels like a modern High Noon, and how it plays into (and stymies) views of the South from a couple of inveterate yankees
  • Quick discussion of DC’s Futures End Free Comic Book Day release, and Batman: Eternal #4

And, as usual, here are the disclaimers:

  • This episode was recorded live to tape, which means that there may be more dead air, ill-advised language, and “ummmms” than you are used to in your standard comics / pop culture podcast
  • This show uses explicit and profane language, and is not safe for work. If you have the choice between listening to this show on speakers and being reprimanded for faking a disability for wearing an earplug to listen to this show? Take the write-up. Sure, your hearing-impaired co-workers will give you the stinkeye tomorrow, but at least you’ll still be employed to see it.
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